Egypt to launch Nilesat 301 Satellite by SpaceX rocket on Wednesday night

Jehad El-Sayed , Wednesday 8 Jun 2022

Egyptian satellite company Nilesat announced that its new satellite, Nilesat 301 is scheduled to be launched by the Space X Falcon 9 rocket on Wednesday 8 June at 11:03 pm Cairo Local Time.

Nilesat 301, manufactured by Thales Alenia Space, is scheduled to be launched by the Space X Falcon 9 rocket on 8 June at 11:03 pm Cairo Local Time. Photo courtesy of Thales Group


Nilesat CEO Ahmed Anis has stated that the geostationary communications satellite Nilesat 301 will be launched from Space Launch Complex 40 (SLC-40) at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida in the United States.

United Media Services (UMS) channels will broadcast the liftoff live for all Egyptians to watch, Anis announced.

Furthermore, SpaceX announced webcasting the mission live on its official website 10 minutes before liftoff.

Nilesate 301, with a projected lifespan of at least 15 years, will replace Nilesat 201, which will expire in 2028.

The new satellite will provide “an expanded broadband internet services to cover Egypt, including remote areas, new projects, infrastructure projects, and new urban communities, as well as gas and oil fields in the eastern Mediterranean,” Anis said. 

According to Anis, it will also cover southern African and Nile River Basin countries, aiming to achieve “greater communication with the peoples of the African continent, in line with the directions of President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi in deepening Egyptian-African relations”.

“Nilesat 301 is able to maneuver antennas to adjust coverage areas in accordance with the needs of African countries, which are considered new markets for Nilesat,” Anis said.

According to SpaceX, a backup launch opportunity for Nilesat 301 is available on Thursday 9 June.

Egyptian satellites - A brief history

In 1998, Egypt became the first Arab country to launch a telecommunications satellite into space with NileSat 101. It was followed by Nilesat 102 in 2000, which distributed hundreds of satellite TV channels.

In 2007, Egypt launched EgyptSat 1, which became the first Egyptian remote-sensing satellite and was manufactured in cooperation between Egypt’s National Authority for Remote Sensing and Space Sciences (NARSS) and Ukraine’s Yuzhnoye State Design Office.

Egypt’s second remote-sensing satellite EgyptSat2 was launched in April 2014, but was lost in space in February 2015. Four years later, Egypt replaced it with EgyptSat A after launching it from the Russian Baikonur Cosmodrome, a spaceport in Kazakhstan leased to Russia.

In August 2019, Egypt established a new space agency, The Egyptian Space Agency, as a public economic authority with a legal standing under the direction of the president of the republic.

The agency aims to create, transfer space technology development, localisation and own self-capabilities to build & launch satellites from Egyptian territory.

By 2019, Egypt had successfully launched the telecommunications satellite, Tiba- 1, into space after postponing the launch twice due to technical difficulties.

Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research Khaled Abdel Ghaffar stated in mid-2021 that Egypt is scheduled to launch two remote sensing satellites in 2022, asserting that the country will spare no effort to promote multilateral cooperation in the space field.

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